Bordeaux third growth Château La Lagune may not release a 2013 grand vin as winemaker Caroline Frey is unsure that the quality is up to her standards.
Speaking to the drinks business, Frey said: “I’m still not sure whether or not to commercialise a 2013 vintage.
“I might just make a very small amount of La Lagune with only best Cabernet Sauvignon we picked, I haven’t decided yet. I’m quite sure I will produce La Lagune 2013, but I’m not sure I will release it. It depends if I have enough wine.
“If I only manage to make less than 30,000 bottles, I’ll keep them aside as a record of the vintage and for tastings.”
The 80-hectare estate usually produces around 100,000 bottles of its grand vin each year.
La Lagune didn’t take part in this year’s en primeur tastings as Frey wasn’t ready to present the wine to critics and merchants.
“We didn’t participate in this year’s campaign as I haven’t made the blend yet. I’ve asked my clients to be patient to wait for the wine to be more ready to drink before I present it,” Frey told db.
“We harvested very late last year. In a normal year it’s hard to make the final blend in time for the en primeur tastings and I wasn’t comfortable about doing it this year – I’d prefer to tell people that I’m not ready than rush the process.
“This vintage was really unique so we’re allowed to do things differently,” she added, describing 2013 as the toughest for La Lagune in the last 30 years.
“Last year was certainly the hardest vintage of my professional life – I hope we don’t have any more vintages like this,” she said.
Frey believes the en primeur tastings take place too early in the year, resulting in winemakers having to rush their blends in order to be able to present them on time.
“Ideally we need a month more but the system is so ingrained it’s not easy to change,” Frey said.
She also admitted that she was more confident about the quality of the estate’s second wine, Le Moulin de Lagune, in 2013, with a large amount of the grapes initially destined for the grand vin due to end up in Le Moulin instead.
Frey took the helm from her father Jacques at La Lagune in 2004. In addition, she is also winemaker at Domaines Paul Jaboulet Ainé in the Rhône Valley. The Freys are also shareholders in Champagne house Billecart-Salmon.